Juvenile and Children's Law Section

This section provides a forum for lawyers who deal with juvenile and children’s law. It produces CLE courses related to this practice area, distributes a newsletter to section members, and works toward improving juvenile justice and children’s law.

Immediate Past Chair
The Odeneal Firm
PO Box 392
Lawrenceburg, TN 38464
LinkedIn: Stacie Odeneal
Midtown Law & Mediation
Po Box 4548
Chattanooga, TN 37405-0548
Karnes Legal Services
2273 North Highland Avenue Ste. A
Jackson, TN 38305-4909

Senate Votes Adoption Agencies Can Deny Gay Couples

In its first bill of the new legislative session, the state Senate passed a measure that would protect religious adoption agencies if they choose to discriminate against same-sex couples, the Tennessean reports. The bill states that no licensed adoption agency would be forced to participate in child placement if it were to “violate the agency's written religious or moral convictions or policies." It also protects the agency from lawsuits for refusing placement based on religious objections and from being denied a license or grant application for public funds because of such a refusal. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Paul Rose, R-Covington, and was passed 20-6, with five Republican members declining to vote.

read more »

Detention Center Says It is Improving Safety After Escape

Nashville’s Juvenile Court is making major management changes after four teens escaped from its detention center last year, Nashville Public Radio reports. The CEO of Youth Enterprise Investment, the company that runs the facility, and Davidson County Juvenile Court Judge Sheila Calloway told Metro Council members last night that they take responsibility for what happened and are working to tighten security. In a related story, News 4 reports that the city’s legal department is exploring whether to ask Youth Opportunity Investment to refund it for the costs of catching the escaped offenders. Nashville police say they spent $253,000 to catch the four.

read more »